The Winery Dogs (@TheWineryDogs), the power trio featuring rock veterans Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater, Avenged Sevenfold), Billy Sheehan (Mr. Big) and Richie Kotzen (Mr. Big, Poison), have signed with Loud & Proud Records. The Winery Dogs’ self-titled debut album will be released in North America on July 23. THE WINERY DOGS was self-produced and mixed by Jay Ruston (Anthrax, Stone Sour, Steel Panther). It features a classic rock/power trio sound which seamlessly melds the immense talents of the three veteran rockers.
The band has already released two videos from the new album, “Elevate” and “Desire,” the latter of which recently premiered onUlitmateclassicrock.com. Both videos can now be seen on their official YouTube page.
Of The Winery Dogs’ signing, Mike Portnoy commented, “I am so excited about The Winery Dogs and am proud and honored to be working with two of the greatest musicians on the planet! Richie Kotzen is such an unbelievable talent, as a vocalist, guitarist and songwriter. I think The Winery Dogs will finally get him the attention and recognition that he so richly deserves. And what can be said of Billy Sheehan that hasn’t been said already? He is one the true pioneers of the instrument and a legend. I am looking forward to working with the great staff of Loud & Proud Records, some of whom I worked very closely with during their time at Roadrunner and my time with Dream Theater. I look forward to continuing that relationship with The Winery Dogs!”
Loud & Proud Owner & President Tom Lipsky added, “The debut by The Winery Dogs absolutely rocks and we are very excited that Loud & Proud is their label partner. This body of work showcases not only their renowned skills as musicians and vocalists, but also the depth of their talent as songwriters. Billy, Mike and Richie delivered some of the best performances of their illustrious careers and I am confident this album will be recognized as one of the truly great rock albums of the year.”
Touted as one of the best guitar players in the world, Richie Kotzen also possesses a voice on par with some of the greatest rock/soul singers and is highly regarded as a gifted songwriter. With guitar styles ranging from rock, blues, jazz and fusion to pop and soul, Kotzen has built a remarkably diverse 20-year career as a guitarist, singer and songwriter. A prolific songwriter, Richie has written several songs that have gone on to become hit singles around the world and he continues to appear in countless books, magazines and websites, being acknowledged as one of the top guitarists in the world.
Mike Portnoy is one of the founding members of Dream Theater, with whom he played drums for 25 years, selling more than 10 million copies worldwide. Portnoy’s long list of awards include 26 Modern Drummer magazine Reader’s Poll Awards, including Hall of Fame Inductee in 2004, MVP of the Year in 2010, Best Progressive Rock Drummer (for the magazine’s record of 12 years in a row), Best Clinician (twice), Best Educational Video/DVD and Best Recorded Performance of the Year (seven times) while in Dream Theater and Avenged Sevenfold. He also holds the distinction being the second youngest drummer ever inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame (at age 37) and is currently the youngest in the magazine’s Hall of Fame. DRUM! Magazine named him Drummer Of The Year for the last two years in a row (2011 & 2012), and he won the Revolver Golden Gods Award for “Drummer Of The Year” in 2011.
As a founding member of Mr. Big, Billy Sheehan forged his place in hard rock history. Mr. Big’s trademark virtuosic musicianship with stellar vocal harmonies and earned them numerous hit songs, including the ubiquitous “To Be With You,” which was a Billboard Hot 100 #1 single in 15 countries, propelling the band to major international success and record sales in the multi-millions. Sheehan was voted the “Best Rock Bass Player” 5 times in Guitar Player magazine’s Readers Poll, earning him a spot in their “Gallery of Greats” along with Jimi Hendrix, Paul McCartney, Geddy Lee, Eddie Van Halen and more, and he has won several Reader’s polls around the world. He won the prestigious Player magazine (Japan’s #1 Music mag) Reader’s Poll for Best Bass Player an unprecedented 14 consecutive times and Burrn! magazine’s (Japan’s #1 heavy metal mag) Readers’ Poll five times. His hands and signature are preserved in cement on the Rockwalk at Guitar Center in Hollywood, CA.
Stay tuned for U.S. tour news, which will be announced in the coming weeks.